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Saturday, 30 March 2013

Spring in the North

It's days like this in Buffalo that I love being a northerner - those early spring days where you know that  the dark cold hell of winter has finally been purged out, and the sun is shining, the grass is beginning to grow again, and everyone is out in shorts and t shirt despite it being only just above freezing...

However, I have more important things to do, I'm reluctantly leaving on a plane to Las Vegas today, to conduct my important post ayahuasca experiment on the poker rooms of Vegas. The interesting first thing I feel is, thanks to Ayahuasca, that I have no particular wish to play poker again, ever. Which is great for any girl i finally marry, but certainly a weird feeling for me. It's the same with coffee. I had one this morning and couldn't finish it. Any wish for caffeine seems to be out of my system. Ahh the wonders of Ayahuasca.

The Ayahuasca trip I was on this time, was the usual rollercoaster ride. I'll write about it this week, as i see how it affects my day to day life. I don't feel the need to change the world right now, so just defeating the world of poker is enough for me.

I've booked a suite in the Trump Tower, (thanks to a big win in Lima, Peru) which is unusual in Vegas because it has no casino. The bad energy in casino's, especially in Vegas, i thought could well make me nauseous so soon after the Ayahuasca, so i erred on the side of caution. If i end up just lounging at the pool all week and finishing up some writing, then its not going to be the end of the world...

Til then, friends, adios...

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Why We Need Hipsters

Hipsters, ya?

You see them everywhere these days. Except for Glasgow, where real people do real things. Even vegans in Glasgow aren't hipsters in any way, something that I am very proud of in my home city.

Sitting here with facial hair and a peru hat, plugging away my apple mac, in Hipster central Buffalo 'sweetness 7 cafe' on the west side (which sells British pies for $6 a pop) I can understand the irony of this statement. But i'm far too genuinely obnoxious to be a real hipster.

I'm always reading and hearing about how the hipster factor is great for gentrification though. These home brewing, lesbian literature reading wastes of space who never admit to being hipsters have money (from bank of mum and dad/trust fund) and are key in transforming neighbourhoods from being rough old redneck joe style places to being rebranded as 'edgy' and are an essential oil in laying the foundations for normal middle class twats to feel ok about moving into erstwhile rough areas.

In Hackney, i'd buy council houses from Nigerian families that had so many cockroaches we would go in with masks and fill bin bags with them, before fumigating the house, painting it, and renting it to Nathan Barleys and finally selling it for double or triple the price to normal middle class people, happy in the fact that Japanese teenagers and twats called Nigel lived in the neighbourhood. (Japanese teenagers have the same affect as hipsters on the neighbourhoods - a great bit of gentrifaction decoration for a council estate !)

Here in Buffalo its no different. Sweetness 7 is pack full of white anglo saxon protestant Portlandia style do-gooders, hatching crackpot non profit (i.e. so stupid they can never make profit) plans for urban vegetable picking collectives and skateboarding parks for Burmese pensioners. But the great news is they are flooding the West side, pushing prices up and pushing poor people out (I mean they don't really want to live beside poor people anyway, because they plan to settle down and have families one day) It's good for the area - beautiful big old houses here with original wood panelling, and stain glass that have tenants that don't appreciate them are moving to cheaper pastures as the '99%' move in and talk about veganism and helping poor people and banning guns, so the poor people can come back and rob them at gun point, of course - part of Gods restribution plan.

Hipsters are actually good for those 'between the gap' business though - lifestyle businesses that can never make money, but sometimes do actually provide a service to the city, like 'free hugs' collectives and of course the hipster trend towards voluntary slavery - anyone want to be my intern for 6 years?

So all in all - Hipsters -

- Useful for slumlords interested in the gentrification process.
- Handy for free stuff.
- Do not in any way add to a city economically apart from that beyond fluff and voluntarism (the latter of which is a saving grace, I concede)
- Put barbers shops and razor sellers into bankruptcy

Anyway i'm glad to be intergrating my latest Ayahuasca journey with my usual love for all mankind. Strangely enough, i'm pretty sure I met God in the amazon jungle and he was quite cool with me being discretionary. I mean, lets face it, he was - just read the old testament....

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Ayahuasca - Pros and Cons

I just got back from the jungle, and am relaxing in Iquitos (if that is at all possible) Rather than tell you about my experience just yet, I thought i'd list some plus and minus points about taking this wonder medicine...


1. It is far and away the most revolting thing I've ever tasted.
2. It's best taken combined with bland food for all week, including no salt or sugar
3. You should take it with a Shaman, in the jungle, which of course isn't cheap.
4. The Shaman could well be dodgy, which isn't so good for your health. Or he could add things into the mix that aren't so good for you (like Toe)


1. You get to meet God.
2. It's good for you.

Saturday, 16 March 2013

St Patricks Day - Glad i'm Nowhere Near Any Plastic Paddies

I think the only thing more annoying than ugly couples kissing in public, is people in random countries with no connection at all to Ireland, 'celebrating' St Patricks day.

Can anyone explain this, apart from marketing genius from Guinness? Why doesn't Johnny Walker get everyone doing it on St Andrews day? Or Tetley Bitter do it for St Georges? Or on the Welsh one, St Davids, maybe they could find a beer brewed in Wales that anyone has heard of?

Anyway, greetings from Lima, Peru - It's my last day here so i'll go out now and buy some Llama jumpers...

An Ugly guy not Kissing, in Lima yesterday

You can't beat lunch at Larco Mar (Miraflores, Lima) Not a St Paddies day parade in sight

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Tampa to Lima...

I woke up yesterday morning, on a street called Sandy Hook Lane.

But then soon after I realised that as far as funny and Florida went, thats about it. I've checked out all the Disney related theme parks, been to the beach, been to Ocean Drive Miami, seen the endless roads full of fast food joints and 3rd rate casinos, but today we thought we'd check out a different place altogether, over in Tampa...

There are a string of beaches just south of Tampa, outside St Petersburg. We went to Indian beach, merely for un-political correct reasons. Just like a Spanish expat town,  the number plates are all Michigan and Ontario snowbirds, retiring down here for the winter and, finding there really is nothing to do and both them and their compatriots are utterly boring people, head to the bar and get drunk every day. The beach itself is pretty nice, you even get the odd small swell in winter to surf on. But it seemed to me, that in Florida, there is somewhere else that does everything better, you know what I mean? I mean, do you really dream of retiring to a beach community full of Toronto Property Developers and their fat wives?

Tampa I had some hopes for though, despite the map showing a suburb called 'concerned citizens of Gibsontown area' - barrel of laughs these guys.

Ybor city is the 'cool, retro' part of town. Its kind of funky, and there is a nice cigar shop called 'Corono cafe' or something similar where you can (wow) smoke inside. No cuban cigars of course. But as im sitting here writing about it, it just gets me that it seemed to be 'almost' something, almost something a half a New Orleans but not quite doing it right, or a half any hipster part of town but not unique or ironic or interesting enough.

Ybor city, Tampa

And as I sit looking like a washed out hungover half bearded escaped cocaine criminal, here in Lima, Peru, at the lovely Larco Mar in Miraflores drinking a $2 Latte, I have to really think to find a place in the West that has any kind of the soul, the vibrancy originality and the pure VALUE that the cities of developing world have.

Lima has really come along a bit since i was last here, three years ago. I only have today and tomorrow, which both promise to be active in the tequila and gambling fronts since on Friday I pay the ultimate price, and go to the jungle and pay penance for my myriad sins under the protective arm of mother Ayahuasca. (see here for the last trips diary!) If i don't come back, dear friends, then its been a pleasure...

Monday, 11 March 2013

First day of Spring, Buffalo

The first day of Spring finally came, here in Buffalo.

From snow every day, everyone wrapped up and perma-drunk to keep winter at bay, then suddenly out of the blue, the sun comes out, the snow melts, and the streets are literally crowded with runners and cyclists -  everyone's out in shorts n t-shirts, and I see a hundred beautiful girls in one day (as opposed to about zero all winter...)

More blighted slums of Buffalo (Frank Lloyd Wrights Darwin Martin House)

The day like this when you basically KNOW winter is finally over, puts some kind of doped up euphoric spell on the whole population of our hardy northern cities, it's the same in Estonia (not quite in Glasgow since we don't really get summer either) Everyone floats around, with a smile on their face, wishing goodwill to all men and feeling glad to be alive. Uni exams haven't quite started yet, the ski season has quite ended yet, and your skin feels kind of weird when it soaks up the light spring rays of sunshine...

Typical! - just a day before i leave for Peru....

Tomorrow i plan to check out the famous Darwin Martin House - a beautiful Frank Lloyd Wright house in Buffalo (one of 5 remaining in the city)

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Ayahuasca and Poker...Marriage made in Heaven?

In a weeks time, i'll be back in the middle of the Amazon jungle, in the lovely homely blue morpho Shamanic Retreat, glugging Ayahuasca like its going out of fashion, getting epiphanies about the meaning of life every 5 minutes, and puking on a 24/7 basis...

But wait a minute here, I thought the other day. What does a week long Ayahuasca fest do to me exactly? Yes, as usual, it's likely to change me for the better, spiritually and probably make me less funny and more serious, and i'm sure i'll end up drinking even less than i do now (which is almost nothing)

But on the plus side, my head will be clear and sharp, and like last time, i'll be uber-vulnerable on leaving the place, able to feel the auras of those around me, and the motives, the inner energy driving each and all of the people i'll meet.

So I had my own little epiphany on this subject. I thought, why not fly straight to Las Vegas afterwards, and play the Venetian Deepstack Poker series? I'll be supersensitive to people, so in theory, surely i'll be excellent (even more than usual) at reading bluffs?

Anyway, dear friends, only time will tell. Perhaps i'll be so sensitive I won't want to be anywhere near a Poker Room, with all that negative, zero sum energy, and guys spending money they can't afford, feeding the sharks. But perhaps, just perhaps, a little bit of the old me will remain to pull me towards the  most amazing thing since the WSOP was invented. Perhaps its a secret weapon and i'll be invincible, break the whole game of poker, and become a zillionaire. Perhaps i'll be walking to the pawnbroker with my Breitling in hand, but either way an adventure, and thats what life's about is it not?

Well dear friends, watch this space....

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

The Weirdness of Life in USA

Is it just me or is there a real wish for the western world to rip itself out of the banality of its current non-existance based around sporting events and soap operas?

I'd like to think i add a little to the inane distractions of life, by writing posts about obese Americans or about Russian girls living on Coffee and cigarettes so they keep slim and get a husband. Today i'll enrich your lives, dear reader, with some more observations on American life (which translates as more Europeans guffawing at the silliness that happens in USA) since i've been stuck here for over a month now...

1. Sauna culture.

US, despite being cold in many places has no Sauna culture. This is possibly connected to the fact that you don't really want to see most American girls naked. In my gym, there is a sauna though, where people turn up with their training shoes on, and full tracksuit, and sit down...kind of missing the point. You can't put water on the Sauna either (for no good reason actually, because i do it all the time when there are no litiganous yanks to whinge)

2. World Travel.

It took 20 minutes in the bank the other day for the tellers to check my ID. They had never seen a foreign passport before. I kid you not. What does this say about the broad/narrow mindedness of the population? I actually told someone I was a Scottish refugee and they believed me. Funny but not funny. It seems that the vast majority of the CNN/Fox watching population have absolutely no interest in or wish to visit anywhere in the outside world. Of course the media tells them it's dangerous (they don't tell you that this is primarily due to US military intervention in the outside world) but these aren't people who are putting 2+2 together. So basically, yet another reason why the world has, and always will have a majority 'slave class'. Which i'm personally, quite alright with.

3. High Fructose Corn Syrup.

The biggest ingredient in pretty much everything in a working class Americans diet, the middle classes woke up to this trick a while back, but being good libertarians, all they do is just buy other (more expensive) stuff and let the working man continue drinking/eating his Pepsi and Burgers. So basically, the taxpayer, pays for Obamacare, which in turn pumps poor/ignorant Americans full of drugs, because they gave themselves diabetes/heart problems, because they eat the food in the supermarket/fast food place. Kind of brings up the shortcomings of the selfish American culture in a nutshell. Of course, this healthcare for the poor wouldn't be needed so much  if, for example, food that is in fact toxic was not legal (like other countries who actually care about their citizens) but of course, who would pay for the election campaign costs if Pharm and Food companies lobby groups weren't getting their way? Personally i'm quite ok with all this, so long as the people who choose to poison themselves, are taxed to hell to pay for the healthcare bills, so I don't have to pay for them. So, why not tax High Fructose Corn Syrup the same as Alcohol or Narcotics? Then maybe the intensive care wards of American hospitals wouldn't be full of fat alcoholics and drug users, wasting US taxpayers dollars...

4. Guns

I'm all for guns. I'm sure I wouldn't last long as a burglar if householders all had guns. Even semi-automatics, why the hell not? And it seems to me to be a good way to get rid of bad people (let them shoot each other all the time, like in Chicago.)

Perhaps Hollywood and the Pharmaceutical Industry have more to answer for on the 'mass shootings' that Americans love, than actual normal people who have guns to protect themselves from burglars and the US government.

If I lived in a country like USA where the only thing I know for sure is that I cant trust the government, then i'd be doing every single thing that they want to ban, as i'd know there's a negative reason for it.

Piers Morgan, who left the UK embroiled in scandal, is completely wrong about getting rid of guns in USA. It won't disarm criminals, it won't disarm the insane prescription drug killers, it will disarm law abiding responsible citizens - soft targets for the authorities.

The UK doesn't have a gun culture. But we don't need one. The bad guys, by and large, don't have guns. Our Police don't have guns either. And we have no real need to be afraid of our bike riding softy Prime ministers (If Labour got in then thats a different story...)

However, living in Buffalo. It seems to me that no one actually has a gun anyway...I must visit Alabama or Texas sometime ;o) But the point is that the problem is the culture here, not the guns.

5. Conspiracy Theories.

I find this pretty funny. Especially the conspiracy theory that the city of London is a law unto itself, and the Queen is the evil reptile Nazi ruler of the world. The tragedy is that most of them are true (like 9/11 or basically any other 'coincidental' scandal just when a new law needs to come out (mass shooting anyone?) But someone must have laced these forums with dodgy kool aid (or more likely they're infiltrated, Philip K Dick style with CIA goons) who put the more crazy ones out there to make fools of the poor sods...

6. Swimming - can someone tell me why does no one in USA swim?